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Montpellier to stage Euro Cup semi

Mon, 01 Apr 2013 19:27
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The dates and venues of the European Cup semifinals were confirmed on Monday.

Stade de la Mosson in Montpellier will stage one semifinal with the winners of the match between Clermont Auvergne and Montpellier meeting the winners of the Harlequins-Munster tie at the 32,000-capacity stadium in France’s Languedoc region.

The match, the first of the 2012/13 tournament semifinals, will take place on Saturday, April 27 with the second match scheduled for Sunday, April 28 at either Twickenham or the Aviva Stadium.

If Saracens defeat Ulster in their quarterfinal, then they will meet the winners of the Toulon-Leicester Tigers at Twickenham, however, if Ulster win, the semi-final will be played at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium.

The semifinals are played at venues designated by ERC and the clubs who will secure home country advantage in the last four were determined by a draw which was conducted in January following the conclusion of the tournament pool stage.

With the knockout stage of the tournament set to dominate the European rugby landscape when the four quarterfinals are decided this weekend, the road to the 2013 European Cup Final at the Aviva Stadium on Saturday, May 18 is now clearer.

European Cup semifinals
(All kick-off times are local)

Saturday, April 27

Clermont Auvergne or Montpellier v Harlequins or Munster, Stade de la Mosson - 18.00

Sunday, April 28

*Saracens or Ulster Rugby v Toulon or Leicester Tigers, Twickenham or Aviva Stadium - 15.00
*If Saracens qualify, the semifinal will be played at Twickenham; if Ulster qualify, the semifinal will be played at the Aviva Stadium

European Cup Final - Saturday, May 18; Aviva Stadium - 17.00

European Cup quarterfinal notes:

• Stade de la Mosson in Montpellier will host a European Cup knockout game for the first time.
• The stadium staged a European Cup pool match between Montpellier and Leinster in the 2011/12 season.
• Opened in 1972, and completely redeveloped for the 1998 FIFA World Cup, the stadium was used for group stage matches during the 2007 Rugby World Cup.
• La Mosson is the home of French Ligue 1 football club, Montpellier HSC.
• If a semifinal is staged at Twickenham it will be the second time a last-four match in the tournament has been played at English rugby’s headquarters. The previous occasion was in 2008 when Toulouse defeated London Irish 21-15.
• Two semifinals have been played at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium which will host this season’s European Cup Final. Last year, Ulster defeated Edinburgh 22-19, and in 2011, Leinster got the better of Toulouse by 32-23.

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